Chicken Cordon Bleu on the Grill

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Chicken cordon bleu is a fantastic way to transform a bland and easily overcooked cut of meat into an irresistible main course that will have your guests reaching for seconds.

The name sounds sophisticated, the dish tastes delicious, and it's not a hassle to make, which makes it a real winner in my opinion! It's versatile too—easy enough to make for a weeknight dinner, yet fitting for a formal meal.

You can prepare this recipe in around 15 minutes and cook it in about half an hour. The sauce can be made while you’re cooking the chicken, so it will be fresh and hot when the chicken is done.

Do you need any supplies or tools for your outdoor cooking? Call us at 717-355-0779 or visit us at 140 W Main Street in New Holland, PA (store hours at the bottom of this page) for rubs, sauces, thermometers, gloves, gadgets, charcoal, pellets, and everything else you need to cook outdoors. You can also browse hundreds of products in our online catalog.

Fire the Smoker

To get started, let's fire the smoker and give it time to heat up while we prepare the meat. For this recipe, I’m using my XLarge Big Green Egg fired with Nature-Glo lump charcoal with a target temperature of 275 degrees F.


Nature-Glo lump charcoal is cheaper than some brands and lights quickly, making it a favorite among our customers.

My favorite method of lighting the Egg is with 1-3 waxed fire starters. I used tumbleweed starters for this cook because that's what I had on hand, but they are more messy than the fire starter squares you can pick up in our store.

Follow these steps to fire the Big Green Egg:

  1. 1
    Fully open the top and bottom vents and remove the convEGGtor. Close the screen vent in the bottom to keep embers from dropping out.
  2. 2
    Fill the firebox ring (or Kick Ash Basket if you are using one) with lump charcoal. Nestle 2 fire starters into the charcoal, and light them with a lighter.
  3. 3
    Leave the lid and bottom vent open for 10 minutes, then add the convEGGtor and close the lid (with the top vent fully open).
  4. 4
    Once the temperature approaches your target temperature (within 5–10 degrees), close both the top and bottom vents to roughly 3/4” open. Watch the thermometer to determine whether it's going up or down and make vent adjustments as needed to dial it in to 275 degrees. To raise the temperature, give the fire slightly more air; to lower the temperature, give it less air.

Nature-Glo lump charcoal

Adding charcoal to my XLarge Big Green Egg

Fire starters nestled into the charcoal

Fire starter lit

Giving the charcoal some time to light

The convEGGtor

The Big Green Egg is an excellent choice for both grilling and smoking, as well as baking desserts and casseroles with a wood-fired flavor. It is charcoal-fired, but easy to use and fuel-efficient. The lifetime warranty covers cracks and more.

Prepare the Meat

Other chicken cordon bleu recipes tell you to pound and roll or slice and fold the meat, securing it with toothpicks. My recipe takes only several ingredients and doesn’t require any special tools. To keep things simpler, I slice the thickest part of the breast down the middle while making a slit only big enough for the ham rollup to slide through.

First, roll 1 slice of Swiss cheese into 2 thin-cut slices of deli ham (I used Virginia ham). Make 8 of these and then insert them into the chicken as follows:

  1. 1
    Set the breast on edge, with the thickest edge up.
  2. 2
    Make a slit along the top edge, parallel with the breast, about 1” long.
  3. 3
    Cut a slit deep and long enough for the ham to fit inside, parallel with the chicken. Work very slowly and carefully to avoid cutting through the chicken. To help guide your knife, lightly squeeze the outside of the chicken with your thumb and forefinger next to the tip of your knife. This step involves some art so take your time.
  4. 4
    Slide the ham and cheese into the slits you cut. Press the opening shut.
  5. 5
    Season the outside with your favorite chicken seasonings. I used Butcher BBQ’s Grilling Addiction and Meat Church Honey Bacon BBQ. The Grilling Addiction is one of my favorites for boosting the flavor of many different foods. The honey bacon gives it some color and adds another dimension of flavor.

Rolling the ham and cheese

Ready to stuff

Making the cut

Lengthening the cut

The cut should be long and wide enough to fit the ham.

The opening

Stuffing it

Stuffed chicken breast

Seasoning the chicken

We carry nearly 150 barbecue rubs in our store, including many popular names in barbecue, such as Meat Church, Killer Hogs, and Myron Mixon. Shop in our store at 140 W Main Street in New Holland, Pennsylvania or in our online store.

Cook the Meat

By now the Egg should be stabilized and running at about 275 degrees with the convEGGtor in place. The exact temperature isn’t critical, but it will affect the cook time.

Brush the cooking grate if necessary and wipe it with a handful of clean paper towels.

To cook the chicken, simply arrange it on the grate and close the lid until it reaches 165 degrees F in the thickest part of the meat. This should take roughly 30 minutes.

Remove the meat from the grill and slice it into 1/2" thick pieces for serving.

Cooking Tips:

  1. 1
    This dish is easy to overcook! Check the internal temperature halfway through the cook to get a sense of how close to done it is, then watch it carefully to avoid overcooking it.
  2. 2
    Be careful to probe the chicken, not the ham in the center.

A hand-held instant read thermometer is essential for cooking outdoors. We carry a full line of high quality thermometers from Thermoworks.

Make the Sauce

While the chicken is cooking, prepare the parmesan cheese sauce. Heat all of the ingredients in a small kettle over medium heat until it has a smooth consistency and thickens a bit. Stir the sauce occasionally to keep it from burning.

Pour the sauce into ramekins for dipping or a gravy pitcher for drizzling over the chicken.

Fresh grated parmesan cheese!

Heating the sauce

Drizzle the chicken with the cheese sauce and serve with a lettuce salad made of your favorite ingredients. For this meal I used butter lettuce, fresh cucumbers from the garden, and a few shavings of parmesan cheese.

Take a deep breath and enjoy the memorable experience you've just created!

Do you need any supplies or tools for your outdoor cooking? Call us at 717-355-0779 or visit us at 140 W Main Street in New Holland, PA (store hours at the bottom of this page) for rubs, sauces, thermometers, gloves, gadgets, charcoal, pellets, and everything else you need to cook outdoors. You can also browse hundreds of products in our online catalog.

Grilled Chicken Cordon Bleu

Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Course Main Course
Servings 8 people

Ingredients
  

Chicken

  • 8 chicken breasts
  • 8 Swiss cheese slices
  • 16 deli ham slices, thin-sliced

Parmesan Sauce

  • 4 cloves garlic finely chopped
  • 3 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 1-1/2 cup cream
  • 2/3 cup parmesan cheese freshly grated
  • Black pepper to taste freshly cracked
  • Salt to taste

Instructions
 

Chicken

  • Roll a slice of Swiss cheese inside two slices of the ham.
  • Cut a slit in the breast that's deep and long enough to fit the ham and cheese roll.
  • Insert the ham and cheese and press the opening shut.
  • Sprinkle the outside of the chicken with Butchers BBQ Grilling Addiction and Meat Church Honey Bacon BBQ or your favorite seasoning for chicken.
  • Cook the breasts over indirect heat at 275 degrees until the chicken reaches 165 degrees F.
  • Slice and serve with the parmesan cheese sauce.

Parmesan Sauce

  • Heat the sauce ingredients in a small kettle over medium heat until it thickens a bit. Stir the sauce to keep it from burning.
Keyword grilled chicken cordon bleu
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